In the previous post, Hazrat Inayat Khan began to describe three aspects of mastery by speaking about the path of the saint. He continues now with two other paths, that of the master and that of the prophet. He mentions the terms ‘Qaza,’ meaning ‘decree’ or Divine Will, and ‘Qadr’, by which he means the portion of will we recognize as human will power.
Another aspect is the aspect of the master. Resistance against all that increases his weakness, that appeals to his weakness, the tendency of continual perseverance, courage and boldness, firmness and steadiness, all such qualities manifest in the master. That is the difference between saint and master. One is active, the other passive. One is resigned, the other persistent. But at the same time both are going forward. Only their ways are different. One is the positive way, the other the negative way. One is the way of power, the other of gentleness. Nevertheless, both have their purpose to accomplish in the scheme of nature.
In the master’s path the will is used mostly in regard to outer things. In the saintly path the will is used to control one’s own self. In other words it is used for the time being against one’s own self. The saint is resigned to Qaza, and the master has regard for Qadr. But in order to know the will of God it is wise first to take one’s own will in hand and use it in the knowledge that it is given for some great purpose in life.
And the third aspect is the aspect of the prophet in whom these two qualities are balanced. On one hand the prophet is power, on the other hand gentleness itself. On the one hand the prophet is courage, on the other he is the personification of divine sympathy. On the one hand the prophet is enthusiastic in his desire to change the condition of humanity, on the other hand the prophet has retired from all things of life. All these opposite qualities are balanced in the spirit of the prophet.
The work of the prophet is a greater work than that of the master or saint. They can remain behind the scenes, but the prophet is before the world to awaken humanity, to raise mankind to a higher consciousness, to inspire it, and to voice the truth so that it may have its echo on the earth, in the sky, everywhere. Do not be surprised, therefore, when you hear that the words of Buddha or Muhammad are still being cherished after so many years, or that the personality of Christ still has power after two thousand years. They have won humanity; they were prophets because that part of their experience, which we know in history, was real and will always remain real. Mastery is not only a means of accomplishing the things of the world, but it is that by which a person fulfills the purpose of his life.
Everything to be found on earth, such as gold and silver, gems and jewels, is all for mankind. And all that gives happiness such as power, intelligence, harmony, peace, inspiration, ecstasy, joy, also belongs to man. Man can make a heavenly experience his treasure, just as well as an earthly possession. It is not necessary for man to leave all the things of the world and go into retreat. He can attend to his business, to his profession, to his duties in life and yet at the same time develop this spirit in himself which is the spirit of mastery. The spirit of mastery is like a spark: by blowing continually upon it, it will grow into a blaze, and out of it a flame will rise.
Man does not need to trouble about what is lacking outside, for in reality all is within himself. And if he will keep this idea before him and blow on the spark of mastery by constant contemplation, then one day that flame will rise and his life will become clear and his power will indeed be great.
To be continued…